The shiny rings of the Olympic Games have grown tarnished over the years as doping, corruption and other scandals rise to the surface. Those scandals are the tip of the iceberg, according to author Christopher Shaw, the lead spokesperson for several anti-Games groups.
Five Ring Circus details the history of how Vancouver won the bid for the 2010 Games, who was involved, and what the real motives were. It describes the role of corporate media in promoting the Games, the machinations of government and business, and the opposition that emerged.
Disturbing questions come to light:
- Why does the IOC pay no taxes?
- Who are the real estate developers behind the Vancouver bid?
- Why are mega projects paid for with tax dollars?
- What are the true costs of the Games?
The Olympic Games, once considered the pinnacle of athleticism and fair play, have become a cesspool of greed, backroom deals and the wholesale trampling of civil liberties. In Vancouver, preparations for the 2010 Games have had a substantial negative impact on the environment and has resulted in the "economic cleansing" of the poor and homeless.
This book is a cautionary tale for future Olympic bid cities, and will appeal to those concerned about the effects of globalization on many aspects of life.